Yes, Democrats are more optimistic than ever about capturing Republican Senate seats, maybe even enough to reach the filibuster-proof 60-seat majority.
Majority Action, a liberal 527 organization, has trained its attack ads on vulnerable Republican senators in North Carolina and Oregon. But now the group is airing an ad (below) against the Republican Senate candidate in Idaho — and Jim Risch is certainly not looking vulnerable.
Risch, the current lieutenant governor, has a nearly two-to-one lead over his Democratic opponent, former congressman Larry LaRocco, according to a Rasmussen Reports poll. (The race also includes an independent who legally changed his name to Pro-Life.)
Though Risch is running to replace Sen. Larry Craig — you might remember his sex scandal? — NPR political editor Ken Rudin rates the race Strong Republican. Not exactly the place you want to spend hard-earned money on a Democrat.
Or maybe it depends: How much money is enough to take that shot? Majority Action just reported its latest haul:
- $300,000 from the Teamsters Union
- $300,000 from the Change to Win labor federation
- $275,000 from the Service Employees International Union
- $266,000 from Stephen Silberstein, a retired California software executive whose foundation has given to the Sierra Club and Human Rights Watch
- $250,000 from Tim Gill, a Colorado software entreprenuer who supports gay and lesbian causes
- $100,000 from David Bonderman, the billionaire who founded the Texas Pacific Group and also funds Campaign Money Watch and Defenders of Wildlife
- $100,000 from Chris Findlater, who heads an environmentally-friendly Wyoming energy company
- $100,000 from Alida Messinger, a Rockefeller heir and ex-wife to former Democratic Sen. Mark Dayton who also funds the League of Conservation Voters, Defenders of Wildlife and reportedly Alliance for a Better Minnesota
Not an Idahoan in the bunch.